Butterick by Gertie Vintage style Dress

B6380_aI made this fabulous vintage style dress from Butterick 6380 which has a sweetheart neckline created by the tabs on either side. A nifty idea!


I made up the pattern to check the fit and finish for this design. Usually I have to do a full-bust adjustment before I can cut into fabric, but first, I always check what the finished garment measurements say (on the pattern envelope) and what the garment measurements say on the pattern tissue. Noting that there was a generous extra 5 inches between actual bust and finished garment measurement, I didn’t think I’d need to do the full bust adjustment but I did double check by doing a tissue fit – pinning together the front and back pieces, gathering the fabric below the bust as shown on the tissue etc. It was fine without the FBA so I launched into the fabric!

Gertie dress 1I’ve used a red cotton print with white spot that I’ve had in my stash for some time. It is  a lovely medium weight fabric so holds the shape of the skirt well. I also lined it with a poly/cotton – not only do I prefer a cotton lining, especially for summer dresses where a polyester lining can get hot and sticky, but again, it helps hold the shape better I feel.

I also decided to use the Surface Mounted zip insertion method because I had a pretty red zip with lacy edging that fitted the bill perfectly. I blogged about how to do this insertion in June’s Zip Tricks – Surface Mounted Zips so do take a look if you want the step by step instructions.

gertie dress2To hem the dress, after allowing it to hang for 24 hours, I cut the edge straight, overlocked it and then turned up a narrow hem of just 1cm and top stitched it in place. This is a quick way to deal with a curved hem such as this and avoids having too much excess fabric in the hem allowance. The alternative is to stitch with a long stitch length (4.5-5) about 13mm from the edge. Turn up the hem allowance tucking raw edge under and pin in place, slightly gathering the hem allowance where necessary to ease in the excess. The excess gathers should only be in the hem allowance and invisible from the right side.

gertie dress 3I’m pleased with my Gertie dress and luckily have a pair of red and white spot shoes that match exactly!


Enjoy sewing. love Wendy

Author: Wendy

I love sewing and being Brand Ambassador for The McCall Pattern Company is a dream job for me. I've sewn all my life, edited sewing magazines, written 17 sewing books and written and starred in 10 DVDs - all on sewing! My aim is to promote sewing using the fabulous pattern ranges from Vogue, Butterick, Kwik Sew and of course McCalls - to show that is a fun and relaxing hobby which can result in stunning results.

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